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Good Schools Study (GSS)

This study has been completed.
Raising Voices
Institute of Education, UK
Makerere University
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Identifier:
First received: August 24, 2012
Last updated: December 17, 2015
Last verified: June 2015
The purpose of this study is to determine whether use of the Good Schools Toolkit is effective in reducing violence against children in primary schools.

Condition Intervention
Physical Violence
Educational Achievement
Mental Health
Sexual Violence
Violence Against Children
Behavioral: Good School Toolkit

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Prevention
Official Title: The Good Schools Study: Cluster Randomised Controlled Trial of a Program to Prevent Violence Against Children in Schools

Further study details as provided by London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Physical Violence From School Staff [ Time Frame: 2-year follow-up ]
    past week experience of any physical violence from school staff

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Child Mental Health [ Time Frame: 2-year follow-up ]
    score on the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ): 20 questions. Total difficulties score, divided by the number of completed items. Modelled as a continuous variable. Range 0 (no difficulties) to 2 (high difficulties).

  • Educational Achievement: Word Recognition in English [ Time Frame: 2-year follow-up ]
    Word recognition in English(words per minute). Early Grade Reading Assessment, Uganda version. Calculated as number of words read correctly (out of a maximum of 50), divided by the time (out of a maximum of 60 seconds).

  • Safety and Well-being at School [ Time Frame: At 2 year follow-up ]

    Five questions. Each question asked with response options: all the time, most of the time, sometimes, never:

    I feel that my teachers care about me. I feel safe in school. I feel like I belong at school. I like to spend time at school. I am scared of my teachers (reverse coded). Scores summed, modelled as a continuous variable. Range 0 (low) to 15 (high). Higher score is better safety and well-being at school.

Enrollment: 3820
Study Start Date: June 2012
Study Completion Date: July 2014
Primary Completion Date: July 2014 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: Good School Toolkit
Schools in the intervention arm will receive the Good Schools Toolkit materials and implementation support.
Behavioral: Good School Toolkit
The Toolkit uses a six step process to create a school wide intervention that engages teachers, students, administration, and parents to reflect on how they can promote quality of education in their school. The Toolkit articulates complex ideas (what is a good learning environment, a good teacher, how to create positive discipline without using violence) through booklets, posters and school initiated learning processes. Specific modules on alternative discipline techniques and how staff can use positive discipline are included in the Toolkit. The intervention includes sessions on knowledge, attitudes and opportunities to practice new behavioural skills. Work is led by teachers and students, and supported by visits from Raising Voices staff. The Toolkit can be reviewed at (
No Intervention: Control
Schools in this arm will receive the Good Schools Toolkit materials and some implementation support after the end of the trial.

Detailed Description:

Violence against children has profound effects on both children's health and their ability to do well at school. Fear, anxiety and injuries caused by violence may play a large role in both children's absenteeism and low educational achievement, and there is increasing interest from large bilateral donors in investigating this link in low income countries. The Good School Toolkit has been developed and refined for 6 years in Uganda by Raising Voices. The toolkit takes a systemic approach, involving an entire school in a process of change to reduce violence and improve teaching techniques. The Toolkit draws on the Transtheoretical Model and incorporates standard behaviour change techniques such as setting a goal and making an action plan, which are effective in modifying behaviour. This study aims to determine whether use of the Good School Toolkit reduces children's experience of violence by school staff. The investigators will also examine the effects of the Toolkit on children's educational outcomes, mental health and well-being.

The investigators will conduct a cluster randomised controlled trial in 40 primary schools in Luwero District, Uganda. More than 3500 children in Primary 5, 6 and 7 will be surveyed (aged about 11-16 years). Half of the schools will receive the Toolkit, and other half will be put on a waiting list to receive the Toolkit at the end of the study. The results from this evaluation will be used to brief policy-makers within the Ministry of Education and Sports involved in developing country-wide policy and practice around violence against children in schools.


Ages Eligible for Study:   Child, Adult, Senior
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No
  1. Inclusion Criteria:

    • Schools

      • in Luwero District, Uganda
      • more than 40 students registered in Primary 5
    • Participants

      • registered as a Primary 5, 6 or 7 pupil
      • any school staff member
  2. Exclusion Criteria:

    • Schools

      -- existing program related to prevention of violence against children or school governance

    • Participants -- not able to understand consent and study procedures
  Contacts and Locations
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT01678846

Multiple, Luwero District, Uganda
Sponsors and Collaborators
London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
Raising Voices
Institute of Education, UK
Makerere University
Principal Investigator: Karen M Devries, PhD LSHTM
  More Information

Publications automatically indexed to this study by Identifier (NCT Number):

Responsible Party: London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Identifier: NCT01678846     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: LSHTM_6183
Study First Received: August 24, 2012
Results First Received: October 8, 2015
Last Updated: December 17, 2015

Keywords provided by London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine:
corporal punishment
conduct disorder processed this record on April 28, 2017